SEA Currents: News
April 05, 2015
For me, the best part of being at sea is always being in the middle of an ever-changing landscape. Some people have asked me if being at sea for weeks becomes monotonous. The answer is that that is impossible. Every minute, the ‘landscape’ we move through is shifting, both the sea and sky and conditions in between. Two nights ago, we witnessed a total lunar eclipse. I was not personally awake to see the event, but caught the tail end of the Earth’s shadow on the moon as we came up on deck for watch at 0245.
April 04, 2015
The past two days have been a simultaneously exciting and exhausting experience for me. Yesterday I faced my fear of heights and climbed up the foremast by way of the ratlines running up the mast. This experience was at once terrifying and exhilarating, a feeling which has often been described as the “sublime,” and I must say that sublime wasn’t one of the words in my head during that time. I would even go so far as to say that no real words were said in those minutes my feet were far above the deck.
April 03, 2015
If you could have a day to repeat, a day to live through again, which day would you choose? That question was posed to the students of S258 this afternoon by the Golden Dragon, the majestic guardian of the 180° meridian and the International Date Line. As Arthur ably told you yesterday, time is both integral to the life of the ship and entirely arbitrary, and we all took this afternoon’s class as an opportunity to celebrate, be a little silly, and mark this unique experience of traveling back through time to live a day over again.
April 03, 2015
Today marks the first 24 hour period that we will observe as the 3rd of April. How is this possible? Tonight we will cross the International Date Line, which, unlike the equator, tropics, or ant/arctic circles, does not represent any change in natural phenomena. It is rather the other side of the prime meridian (itself an arbitrary line) that runs through Greenwich, England. Although it is arbitrary, the Date Line is important because of our attention to time.
April 02, 2015
Today we were privy to the very first sunrise that April second would see. The International Dateline takes an easterly dip to avoid cutting the Chatham Islands off from mainland New Zealand time, putting it on the cutting edge of every new day. Anchored in Waitangi Bay this morning, the dawn watch’s numbers were nearly tripled as camera wielding sailors rushed the quarterdeck to bear witness to the first sun. I found a personal connection with this particular golden explosion of light.
April 01, 2015
There’s something special about lying in the grass knowing you won’t see it for another three and a half weeks or so. Sitting in the middle of a stunning landscape of rolling hills, soaking up the sunshine and, more importantly, experiencing correct inner ear alignment, really gave me an appreciation for land – for solid ground – that I didn’t have before. This is especially true when that land is the bizarre yet mesmerizing terrain of the Chatham Islands.
March 31, 2015
Sleeping on still water never felt so good. So good in fact, that I did not hear my shipmate Ari wake me up for dock watch at 0300. Even though watch was only an hour, I tried my best to keep myself awake with boat checks and weather observations. Let’s just say it was not the easiest of mornings. After breakfast, B Watch prepared to start a dawn cleanup of the ship. I had my gloves on ready to tackle the head (a.k.a the bathroom) when Captain called us up on deck.
March 31, 2015
The Robert C. Seamans has arrived at Chatham Islands. They have a busy slate of field trips planned for their time there, so while it may be a day or two before they send us a new blog post, rest assured that all is well with S-258.
March 30, 2015
Today marks just our 3rd full day out on the open seas! The Chatham Rise has treated us well, and in my case, has really put the world into perspective. The Pacific is a huge place! We’ve currently travelled over 400 nautical miles by pure sail and are due to touchdown in the Chatham Islands this evening! Weather has had its ups and downs; last night we cruised right on through a squall with winds/seas of a Beaufort Force 7 (look it up if you don’t know what I mean!). It was quite the experience to be at the helm trying to maintain course with rain pelting my eyes and waves rocking and rolling everywhere.
March 30, 2015
Alongside in Old San Juan, tucked in between the mighty cruise ships yet their passengers look upon us with envy as they wander by. Corwith Cramer now rests, having served her charges well. Over 2000 nautical miles sailed with nary a scratch. The students have now departed, headed off in a myriad of directions, some perhaps to never set foot aboard again, but that is the magic, for the ship and the sea are in their blood, and whether or not they ‘return to the sea,’ the evolution and the experience they’ve had lives on.